News Column

Expo Americas Kicks off Hispanic Heritage Month at Union Station

Aug. 27, 2012

Expo Americas kicks off National Hispanic Heritage Month in Kansas City.

The event is scheduled to take place September 15 and 16, at Union Station, Kansas City's most prominent destination for cultural and entertainment activities to kick off National Hispanic Heritage Month.

This jam packed two-day business and consumer expo is expected to draw an estimated 30,000 people of all ages, ethnicities and will encompass all of Kansas City's surrounding communities.

Built in 1914, Union Station encompasses 850,000 square feet and originally featured 900 rooms. In its prime as a working train station, accommodated tens of thousands of passengers every year. The station also draws tourists from all over the world who marvel at the Grand Hall's 95-foot ceiling, three 3,500-pound chandeliers and the six-foot wide clock hanging in the Station's central arch.

"Union Station is honored and thrilled to have been selected as the location for Expo Americas," said George Guastello II, president and CEO of Union Station Kansas City. "We look forward in helping make Expo Americas a major event in the region."

Sixteen years ago, a group of local Kansas City business owners organized a one-time event called, "Hispanic Economic Awareness Expo" that was attended by nearly 27,000 people at the Kansas City Market Center. The event brought great success to Kansas City but has not been replicated. In honor of the grand gesture, Expo Americas is reuniting several of the original organizers from that event in the same spirit to bring together families, entrepreneurs, business executives, industry professionals, community leaders, educators and service organizations for an opportunity to spotlight issues, sample products, access services and enjoy top entertainment.

"Expo Americas is a timely, tech savvy and comprehensive event that targets the Latino community through a holistic approach," said Mark Grado, Groove Consulting Inc. and original principal of the 1995 expo.

Principal organizers are Groove Consulting Inc., the Hispanic Economic Development Corporation (HEDC), Reyes Media Group (Dos Mundos Newspaper, La "X" (Equis) 1250 AM La Super Estación, La Gran D 1340 AM and Radio Vida 1480 AM), Mark Moreno, Jason Smith Mendez, LatinPointe Inc., B.A.E. and Wise Writers and Speakers.

Joe Ochoa of JLO Productions is coordinating the family carnival operations.

The burgeoning Latino demographic is a contributor to consumer trends nationally and in the Kansas City metropolitan area. Indicators are reflected though bolstered advertising and marketing efforts targeting Latinos as seen recently with the high profile concerts being performed at Kansas City's Sprint Center. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the total number of Latinos in 2010 in the state of Missouri was 209,612 and in Kansas was 299,577 translating into a billion-dollar economic boon in sales and revenue for the two states.

Featured attractions will include a Quinceañera Fashion Fare, Cultural Arts Plaza, Business Economic Symposium, Technology Plaza, Career Fare, Health & Fitness Pavilion, Children's Adventure City and Culinary Plaza with more to be announced. An estimated 500 exhibitor participants from local organizations, businesses and national corporations will be presenting consumer products and services. Product sampling, demonstrations and free services will be available.

For sponsorship, exhibitor, talent and ticketing information, visit

Source: (c) 2012. All rights reserved.

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